Top positive review
2 people found this helpful
on July 27, 2017
So many places online have been knocking this machine. They say the China stuff is junk and that all the reviews are fake. I've always felt that the truth can be found someplace between the extremes. I am by no means a welder, I do not claim to be. I'm a weekend warrior who goes on YouTube to learn how to do things that I need to get done. I lucked out and had a friend come over who did know how to weld, and he at least got me started. I then went on to weld for about 120 hours over the span of a couple months.
I have been using flux-core wire of many different brands.
Here are my observations:
1) I used the inside of the cover as a guide for settings and found them close to what I needed. Through trial/error/testing I managed to get exactly what I needed. I even managed to weld some very thick plate which was off the charts. These welds have held for a few months now and supported anything thrown at them without issue.
2) I had a ton of feeding issues. I could actually feel the wire binding in the tip and was able to stop it from doing a birds nest. I was spending more time stopping and pulling the wire passed the sticking point than I was actually welding. I tried different wire with no luck, I messed around with the spool and such with no luck. I changed from the tip to one I purchased on here and SUCCESS! Once I swapped the tip I've had no feed issues at all so far.
3) I learned that, if you accidentally press the rubber 'neck' of the gun into sharp metal, it scares the crap out of you when it arcs at that point instead of the tip. Probably my error for not paying attention to edges and such, but it did seem strange to me how easily it melted through.
4) The cup fell off.. the adhesive that secured it to the nut that screws onto the gun melted or something strange happened.. and the cup just fell off. As I wasn't using gas this didn't matter much to me but I'm having trouble finding a cup that I know will fit. I chalk this up to inexperience.
5) The ground seems pretty good to me, I have been cleaning the metal off before attaching it.
6) The unit has not stopped me from working due to a duty cycle. I do hear the fan running a bit and all, but the machine hasn't done anything to stop me from welding like crazy all afternoon. I'm not sure what it's rated for or if it is supposed to shut down and stop me automatically, but I've welded for 30 minutes straight without any sort of issues.
7) The spool inside is a bit weird, the key system doesn't seem to work with the smaller rolls and neither I or the friend that welds could make much sense of if there was some special thing we were missing. It didn't seem to matter because we put the spool of wire on and used the wing-nut and that gave no issue.
To be honest, for what I need, this is a fantastic unit. Just last week my friend had a metal bracket snap on his trailer while he was at my place and, in less than a few minutes, it was back in place and he was off and running. For a guy like me, being able to weld once in a while, no matter what the machine, is awesome. I can't justify going out to buy one of those heavily advertised units that are all over the place, it just makes no sense to shell out $500+ for something that is going to collect dust for half a year or more. Originally, I was looking for someone to weld for me, but even factoring in my cost for this project (machine/metal/supplies/case of beer) I'm still out less money and walked away with a new skill that will serve me in the future. Can't go wrong with that!